Jam Room Music Festival released their 2013 lineup this morning featuring Son Volt, one of the quintessential bands that helped revive the alt-country movement of the mid 90’s. Joining Son Volt will be Georgia retro rockers The Woggles, The Great Book of John, Rachel Kate, and Diali Cissohko & Kaira Ba with more bands to come. Festival goers might remember The Woggles from last years JRMF or from their Jam Room presents show earlier this year at New Brookland Tavern. The Great Book of John is fronted by Taylor Shaw, a former member of Alabama band Wild Sweet Orange, who has a silky-smooth deep voice and some seriously good songs. Charleston’s Rachel Kate is one of SC’s diamonds, with her all-out husky voice, often accompanied by acoustic guitar and cello. Diali Cissokho and Kaira Ba hails from NC’s triangle hot-bed-of-a-music-scene playing west African inspired pop music.
There’s a running joke when it comes to Columbia, SC music festivals booking nostalgic 90’s musical acts, and the Jam Room Music Festival seems to have followed suit when it comes to booking Son Volt. From one angle it’s a great get. Jay Farrar and company are legends of their genre that never saw the commercial success that the major labels pushed for them to receive. Wilco was the only band that saw the mass attention they deserved, but even they had a hell of a time with major labels to get where they are today. Even at my age (29) I don’t feel like I’m in the Son Volt demographic, which in a town of 30,000 college students seems a little off. Last year veteran rockers The Hold Steady were coupled with Justin Townes Earle, who caters to both young and old markets, and was extremely relevant touring on his 2012 album. But hey, it’s free, and Son Volt is one of alt-countries luminary bands so you can’t complain too much. Maybe some of those college kids loved Farrar’s collab with Death Cab For Cutie/The Postal Service front-man Ben Gibbard and will attend and check out his main gig. Plus they’ve got a new album out, which gives Son Volt fans that extra little push to see them live.
And there’s always the “and more!” tag to keep us all guessing. One thing we know is that we can trust the Jam Room crew to book some solid locals.